Deserts and Beyond

Deserts and beyond...places in and around the southern California deserts and beyond. Photo taken at Canyon Lake, in the Superstition Mountains of Arizona, December 2011. A few minutes later, after the sun disappeared, these cliffs were their normal color. They were only golden for a short time and I'm glad we were able to view them in their glory.






Monday, July 29, 2013

Grilled banana boat dessert

We had grilled banana boats for dessert Saturday night up in Pinyon.  Hubby found a similar recipe on the Whole Foods website:

http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/recipe/grilled-bananas-sweet-toppings

Did I mention that a Whole Foods Market is coming to Palm Desert?  It should open this fall.  The workers are busy remodeling the old Best Buy store and I can't WAIT for it to open!   :-)

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Dinner in the mountains

My good friend Barb invited us up to her home in the pinyon area of our local mountains last night, so off we went, armed with asparagas, corn, and wine.  We had grilled shrimp, chicken, corn, asparagas, and some peppers and home-grown tomatoes for dinner.  It was delicious!  AND, we ate outside (something that we can't do here in the desert this time of year)!  We saw stars and the Milky Way.  It was WONDERFUL!  We met the nice couple who grew the tomatoes.  They have their own small organic farm and I'm so thankful he shared his tomatoes with us!  They were delicious, unlike those you buy in the grocery store (which taste like cardboard!).  A good time was had by all, including Barb's horses and other animals!  :-)




Monday, July 22, 2013

Palm Springs building~Whimsical Windows, Delirious Doors~072213

You know, I need to drive in to Palm Springs more often!  I've been driving there almost every morning now to take photos of the Mountain Fire and hubby and I had to drive our daughter and her family into the airport Saturday morning.  They are going to Oregon for 10 days.  On my way back home (it's a good 25 miles to Palm Desert), I was driving down Palm Canyon Drive looking at all the buildings.  The street was deserted at 6:00 a.m., so I was able to stop and snap a few photos, like this building.  One day this week I'll just drive slowly down Palm Canyon and take photos of the buildings!  Then I can stop at Jensen's market and buy some of their delicious salads to take home!  Whimsical Windows, Delirious Doors for July 22, 2013.   To visit WWDD, please go to:   http://iwishiwereaphotographer.blogspot.com/2013/07/whimsical-windows-delirious-doors-86.html

Friday, July 19, 2013

Cows, fire, and fence~Friday's Fences~071913

I took this photo of the Mountain fire on Tuesday and by Thursday the road was closed.  The cows weren't too concerned about the fire, which burned away from them and is now heading down into Palm Canyon and Andreas Canyon (the Palm Springs Indian canyons).  We will all watch the weather today because a monsoon is moving toward the valley and our mountains and that means wind shifts.  This fire is now over 22,000 and is the priority of the US Forest Service.  The entire towns of Idyllwild and Fern Valley have been evacuated and are ghost towns.  Friday's Fences for July 19, 2013.  To visit Friday's Fences, please go to:   http://lifeaccordingtojanandjer.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Mountain fire

The Mountain fire (as it is called) is up in our local San Jacinto mountains, where I spend a lot of my free time.  In fact, it's right at the turnoff to Idyllwild, where hubby and I spend weekends in a rented cabin.  It is NOT moving toward the town of Idyllwild, rather it is now burning south and east, toward the Palm Springs Indian canyons.  It started a few days ago and went from 5 acres to 10, to 25, to 50, then 900, then 1,500, then 2,500 acres, and it is now over 9,000 acres.  It is only 10% contained. I drove up that way yesterday to go to my horses' weekly lesson (they are AWAY from the fire and are in no danger...) and after that I drove out Highway 74 to view the fire.  There were quite a few cars pulled over, too.  We haven't had a fire like this in our mountains for many, many years and the trees and brush are all very dry.  Plus, the winds are not helping.  It was quite breezy up there yesterday.  It's very scary to see all the smoke settle down here in the Coachella Valley.  A few mobile homes burned up near Mountain Center and Lake Hemet and a camp was evacuated.  It's hard to control this fire because they are very few roads up in that area and NONE on the Palm Springs side until one gets to the Indian canyons and populated areas.  I'll keep an eye on it and I might go out today to take more photos.  Here are some from yesterday.







Friday, July 12, 2013

Orange dome~Orange You Glad It's Friday~071213

This cute domed building is along Highway 395, near Olancha, CA (where Crystal Geyser water is bottled).  It's actually in a little town that has several run-down buildings.  We usually just drive right by it, but on our way home from the Sierra Nevada in June, I insisted we stop and take a photo of the buildings, including this one.  It's it unique?  I wonder what it's like inside...Orange You Glad It's Friday for July 12, 2013.  To come on over to OYGIF, please go to this link:  http://writingsofmaria.com/ and participate!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Strange clouds~SkyWatch Friday~July 12,2013


Hubby and I went outside one evening a couple of weeks ago because we noticed we might have a decent sunset and this is what we saw~~a really strange cloud!  Of course, it didn't last long and soon was gone.  SkyWatch Friday for July 12, 2013.

My Town Shoot Out~Surrounded~for Friday, June 12, 2013

View out of an old window in downtown Bodie State Park.  Posted for My Town Shoot Out for July 12, 2013.  This week's theme is "surrounded", so I figured the wooden window frame surrounded the view outside it.  To visit MTSO, please go to:  http://mytownshootout.blogspot.com/

Monday, July 8, 2013

Mountain shop~Whimsical Windows and Delirious Doors~070813

This was the Idyllwild gift shop, all decked out for the July 4th weekend.  Isn't it cute?  Whimsical windows and Delirious Doors for July 8, 2013.  To visit WWDD, please go to:   http://iwishiwereaphotographer.blogspot.com/

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Pines and shadows~Shadow Shot Sunday~070713

Hubby and I took a 4 night trip to Idyllwild, which is up in our local San Jacinto mountains, last weekend.  I took this photo the afternoon we arrived (Sunday) because I liked the way the tree limbs were shading the pines.  It was just so nice up there!  It was 20-25 degrees cooler than the desert, although Saturday it was 101 degrees, even up at 6,000 feet in the mountains!  PHEW!  By Sunday, it was down to 99 degrees, then the mid-80's for the rest of the week.  We even had some sprinkles Sunday night.  We enjoyed our break from the desert heat, but now we are home for a long stretch...sigh...Shadow Shot Sunday for July 7, 2013. To visit SSS, please go to:   http://shadowshotsunday2.blogspot.com/

Pink flowers~Today's Flowers~070713

I don't know what these flowers are, so maybe somebody can tell me?  They are a low-lying, spreading flower.  I found these up at the horse ranch where I board my horses.  There were hummingbirds buzzing all around the ranch owner's porch.  They weren't landing on these, but they sure were enjoying the hummingbird feeders!  Anyway, I enjoyed viewing them, whatever they are~!  Today's Flowers for July 7, 2013.  To visit other flowers, please go to this link for Today's Flowers:   http://flowersfromtoday.blogspot.com/

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Just some pretty flowers






The roses are up at the horse ranch where I board my horses and the rudbeckia are up in Garner Valley.  My wildflower garden gets too much shade (yes, even here in the desert!)...I'm going out tomorrow morning and cut back some of the mesquite tree which shades mine.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Mountain flowers~Orange You Glad It's Friday~070513



No, these are not my flowers.  Mine haven't blossomed yet.  I gave them a dose of my horse manure tea (since I have plenty of horses to provide the manure) and hopefully, within a few weeks, mine will look like these.  Mine also don't get full sun, so that may be another reason they haven't taken off, like these gorgeous ones.  Aren't they delightful?  OYGIF for July 5, 2013.  To visit OYGIF, please go to:   http://writingsofmaria.com/ and enjoy all the entries there!

Idyllwild weekend and weekdays

Sorry I haven't been around for a while (apparently nobody cares...)...We sent to Idyllwild for a few days (5) this last week, Sunday through Thursday morning.  I wanted to be home for the fireworks in case the dogs went ballistic.  Ripley got very hyper for the first few fireworks, then settled down.  Our desert house is only a couple of blocks away from the Palm Desert civic center, where there's a huge fireworks show.  You should have heard all the car alarms that went off!  Anyway, it was at least 20 degrees cooler up in Idyllwild and we both relax in the tall pines.  No, really.  We both notice that we are different people among the trees. Maybe because we both have Viking ancestors?    I loved just sitting on the back porch and listening to the blue jays announce intruders to their forest (usually a crow).  And, EVERYBODY disappeared when a hawk flew overhead.  Two families of quail came to visit.  One had 5 babies.  The other family had 10!  They were so tiny; they looked like little balls of feathers running around!  (so cute!)  There were about 5 squirrels and they, too, had their moments, especially when two of them would chase each other around a tree!  Needless to say, it was very relaxing up there.  Now we're home for a LONG stretch.  Clouds and humidity have moved up into the valley because there is a tropical storm off the coast of Baja California.  Ugh.  It's REALLY humid here and my hair is frizzing!